Defending the Theistic View

The Myth of Jesus: A Refutation of the Zeitgeist — Part 7

Zeitgeist, the Movie is heavily dependent on the idea that the Bible and Christianity have their roots in astrology and the Zodiac. — In “The Myth of Jesus: A Refutation of the Zeitgeist — Part 6,” I debunked such claims that Jesus’ birth sequence was astrological and that the 12 disciples are representative of the twelve constellations of the Zodiac. Both claims are completely reliant on the “in-English-only” play on words that Jesus is a solar deity or sun god, in that “Son” of God it equivalent to “Sun” of God. The problem is that this doesn’t work in the Biblical languages of Greek and Hebrew so therefore is superficial.

Before actually attempting to further tie Jesus with the Zodiac, Zeitgeist claims,

The ancient Egyptians along with cultures long before them recognized that approximately every 2150 years the sunrise on the morning of the spring equinox would occur at a different sign of the Zodiac. This has to do with a slow angular wobble that the Earth maintains as it rotates on it’s axis. It is called a precession because the constellations go backwards, rather than through the normal yearly cycle.

The major problem here is that Zeitgeist gives the false  impression that the ancient Egyptians long understood the precession of the equinoxes. The truth is that the the Greek astronomer Hipparchus is credited as being the discoverer of  the precession of the equinoxes around the years 146 to 130 BC. (text link) — Also, the Zodiac in Egypt is not particularly ancient when compared to the civilization itself. The truth is that is was introduced from  both Babylon and Greece as late as the Greco-Roman period! (click here) From these facts it is obvious that the film makers didn’t do enough research.

The film next goes on to talk about other “astrological-astronomical metaphors” which it alleges are in the Bible. These metaphors are about the references to the “age” that are made in the Bible. To elaborate on this claim, Zeitgeist explains about the Zodiac ages,

The amount of time that it takes for the precession to go through all 12 signs is roughly 25,765 years. This is also called the “Great Year,” and ancient societies were very aware of this. They referred to each 2150 year period as an “age.” From 4300 b.c. to 2150 b.c., it was the Age of Taurus, the Bull. From 2150 b.c. to 1 a.d., it was the Age of Aries, the Ram, and from 1 a.d. to 2150 a.d. it is the Age of Pisces, the age we are still in to this day, and in and around 2150, we will enter the new age: the Age of Aquarius.

Since this particular claim itself is not wrong, so far there is no refutation needed. From this Zeitgeist simplifies how it interprets the Bible in order to make it fit into the Zodiac ages. The problem, however becomes that these interpretations are ludicrous.

Zeitgeist claims that the Bible shows symbolic movement through 3 ages and foreshadowsa fourth age. It then begins with an interpretation of Moses,

In the Old Testament when Moses comes down Mount Sinai with the 10 Commandments, he is very upset to see his people worshiping a golden bull calf. In fact, he shattered the stone tablets and instructed his people to kill each other in order to purify themselves. Most Biblical scholars would attribute this anger to the fact that the Israelites were worshiping a false idol, or something to that effect. The reality is that the golden bull is Taurus the Bull, and Moses represents the new Age of Aries the Ram. This is why Jews even today still blow the Ram’s horn. Moses represents the new Age of Aries, and upon the new age, everyone must shed the old age.

The claim Zeitgeist makes that the Golden Calf was Taurus the Bull has no support from the context in Exodus chapter 32. There is a much more plausible explanation as to what the Golden Calf represented. We have to take into account that at this point in time the Hebrews had just escaped Egyptian slavery. The Golden Calf is most likely the Egyptian god, Apis, the sacred bull of Memphis which is an incarnation of either Osiris or Ptah. (Source) — It goes without saying that an explanation from history is much more believable than a suggestion that has no support from the context.

The film claims that Moses was not truly angered at the fact that his people were worshiping a false god, but rather because he represents the Aries. — The fact is that this claim has absolutely no textual support. I would question if the film makers have even read the Biblical story because the context completely supports the idea that Moses’ anger was kindled by false worship. There is nothing in the entire story that suggests that Moses represents the Age of Aries or that he is the reason why Jews blow the rams horns. And if anyone would like to argue with me on this then I would tell them to read the Bible and see for themselves. Zeitgeist is simply inserting details in the text that just aren’t there.

It should be noted, as the film points out, that the Age of Aries had begun in 2150 BC. — According to Biblical dating, the Exodus happened in 1437 BC. It was 713 years way too late for Moses to  get angry that his people had not caught onto the “new age.”

Next, Zeitgeist attempts to connect the symbol of the Christian fish to the Zodiac,

Now Jesus is the figure who ushers in the age following Aries, the Age of Pisces the Two Fish. Fish symbolism is very abundant in the New Testament. Jesus feeds 5000 people with bread and “2 fish.” When he begins his ministry walking along Galilee, he befriends 2 fisherman, who follow him. And I think we’ve all seen the Jesus-fish on the backs of people’s cars. Little do they know what it actually means. It is a Pagan astrological symbolism for the Sun’s Kingdom during the Age of Pisces. Also, Jesus’ assumed birth date is essentially the start of this age.

The claim now is that the Christian fish is a symbol for the Age of Pisces which Zeitgeist is careful to mention is represented by “two fish.” — It then points out the miracle of Jesus feeding a crowd of 5,000 with bread and “two fish.” (Luke 9: 13, 14) — It’s careful to mention the number of fish but yet it neglects to mention the number of five loaves of bread because it has no parallel with the zodiac and throws off the symbolism.

The next alleged “parallel” with the Age of Pisces is that Jesus befriended “two fisherman,” — again, the reference to two fish. However this is faulty as well because even though it is true that Jesus befriended some fishermen, there weren’t just two. As a matter of fact there were a total of four fishermen listed among Jesus’ disciples, not two. (Mark 1: 16, 20). This difference in number is enough to refute the connection between them and Pisces.

Even though Zeitgeist implies that Christians lifted the fish from paganism, there are more internal reasons for the Christians to have adopted it. According to Mark 1: 17, Jesus commissioned his followers as “fishers of men.” — Also, in Greek, the word for fish (ΙΧΘΥΣ) is also an acronym for “Ιησους Χριστος Θεου Υιος Σωτηρ.” — In English this translates as “Jesus Christ, God’s Son is Savior.” — The symbol of the fish was used during the first centuries when Christians were being persecuted by the Romans. It is said that it was used by Christians in secret to identify other Christians. (Text Link) So the fact is that Christians had enough reasons to use a fish without any pagan influences, much less influence from the Zodiac.

Also, the attempt made by Zeitgeist to date Jesus’ birth to 1 AD (the first year of the Age of Pisces) is misguided. It is more likely that Jesus was born between 7 to 2 BC. So, close but no cigar. Jesus’ birth doesn’t mark be beginning of the new age.

Next, Zeitgeist tries to link a certain statement Jesus made in Luke 22: 10 to a fourth age of the Zodiac,

At Luke 22:10 when Jesus is asked by his disciples where the next passover will be after he is gone, Jesus replied: “Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there shall a man meet you bearing a pitcher of water… follow him into the house where he entereth in.” This scripture is by far one of the most revealing of all the astrological references. The man bearing a pitcher of water is Aquarius, the water-bearer, who is always pictured as a man pouring out a pitcher of water. He represents the age after Pisces, and when the Sun (God’s Sun) leaves the Age of Pisces (Jesus), it will go into the House of Aquarius, as Aquarius follows Pisces in the precession of the equinoxes. Also Jesus is saying is that after the Age of Pisces will come the Age of Aquarius.

To anyone who has actually read the passage that Zeitgeist cites here to support a parallel between the New Testament and the Zodiac, it is clearly obvious that the film takes the Biblical passage completely out of context.

Zeitgeist claims that in this passage Jesus’ disciples asked Jesus where they will celebrate the Passover “after he is gone.” —  Even though the words “after he is gone” do not appear in the transcript of Zeitgeist, they are added in the film itself and therefore warrant a refutation. — The truth is that nowhere in the context (Luke 22: 7, 12) do the disciples ask about the next Passover “after he (Jesus) is gone.” As a matter of fact, they didn’t ask him anything. However in the separate account in Mark 14: 12, 15 the disciples do ask him where he wants to celebrate the Passover,  but nothing is mentioned about the next Passover after Jesus’ death. Zeitgeist is inserting details in the Biblical text that are not there.

As for the claim that the man with a pitcher of water is representative of the coming Age of Aquarius — This is completely taken out of context. Also, the suggestion that “Jesus is saying is that after the Age of Pisces will come the Age of Aquarius” is way off the charts of what the New Testament says. — Remember, Mark says that Jesus’ disciples asked him where he wanted to celebrate the Passover. If Jesus replied to their question in such a manner that Zeitgeist claims then that would have given his disciples lots of reason to say “Huh? We didn’t ask that.”

Also a man carrying a pitcher of water 2,000 years ago is way to generic to automatically assume a parallel with Aquarius. Before indoor plumbing, carrying water in pitchers was not unusual at all. Does it make sense to apply Zeitgeist’s logic to these cases and assume everyone who fetches water in a pitcher represents Aquarius? — No, I didn’t think so.

The last attempt that Zeitgeist tries to tie the New Testament to the Zodiac are the references it makes to “the age.”

Now, we have all heard about the end times and the end of the world. Apart from the cartoonish depictions in the Book of Revelation, the main source of this idea comes from Matthew 28:20, where Jesus says “I will be with you even to the end of the world.” However, in King James Version, “world” is a mistranslation, among many mistranslations. The actual word being used is “aeon”, which means “age.” “I will be with you even to the end of the age.” Which is true, as Jesus’ Solar Piscean personification will end when the Sun enters the Age of Aquarius. The entire concept of end times and the end of the world is a misinterpreted astrological allegory.

Zeitgeist claims that the King James Version of the Bible mistranslated Matthew 28: 20 the term “aeon” the Greek word for age as “world.” The film implies that Jesus is saying Jesus’ Age of Pisces ends as the Age of Aquarius begins and that therefore the idea of the “end of the world” is a “misinterpreted astrological allegory.”

— Actually, the term used is “αιων” which is pronounced “aion.” (Text Link) — It is true that the term means “age.” But contrary to the claims made by Zeitgeist, the term used in the passage  also means forever, an unbroken age, perpetuity of time, universe and even the worlds. So the fact is Matthew 28: 20 can be translated as “I am with you always, even to the end of the universe.” (Text Link)

— So much for the claim that Jesus was not talking about the actual end of the world. It is clear that just because the term “age” is used in the New Testament, that does not indicate that it is therefore referencing the Ages of the Zodiac. As a matter of fact, the Greek word for “age” is used in several contexts in the Bible where it would be ridiculous to suggest that the Zodiac is being referenced. (For example, Luke 1: 70 and 1 Corinthians 2: 6)

It is pretty obvious that the Film, Zeitgeist, as well as many other “Jesus-Mythers” are willing to tie any reference in the Bible of fish to Pisces, any Bull or calf to Taurus, or water to Aquarius no matter how ludicrous these “connections” are. No reputable scholar would ever make such weak connections between the Zodiac and the Bible.

Despite the fact that Zeitgeist makes the claim that the Bible “has more to do with astrology than anything else” — The Bible actually discredits Astrology and Stargazing as acts of Divination,

Surely they [astrologers and stargazers] are like stubble; the fire will burn them up.They cannot even save themselves from the power of the flame. Here are no coals to warm anyone; here is no fire to sit by. (Isaiah 47: 14 NIV)

Also the claim that Jesus is a Sun god is also can be dismissed due to the Judeo-Christian opposition of the worship of both the Sun and the constellation  which is shown in the Bible. — 2 Kings 23: 5 talks approvingly about Josiah, the King of Judah, who abolished such practices during his reign,

[Josiah] did away with the pagan priests appointed by the kings of Judah to burn incense on the high places of the towns of Judah and on those around Jerusalem—those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun and moon, to the constellations and to all the starry hosts.

Such passages are not what one would expect to find in a book that promoted astrology. Considering the fact that Judaism opposes Sun worship, it is not likely for  the first Christians (who were Jews themselves) to consider Jesus a god of the sun. Such a thing was against their religion. As I have mentioned before, the claims made by Zeitgeist that Jesus is the “Sun” of God which is a play on words with “son,” are moot because this only works in English. And the Bible was not written in English.

There is no evidence that Jesus was ever considered a solar deity or that Christianity is based on the worship of the sun. Likewise, the connections that Zeitgeist attempts to make between the Bible and the constellations of the Zodiac have no basis in what the Biblical passages it refers to actually say. Every single case is taken out of context to support a view that no competent historian or scholar would ever endorse.

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8 responses

  1. TD

    I’m just curious to know how you found out the information posted on this site? Are you a scholar of some type or what? I thought the claims in the Zeitgeist movie where pretty sound until now. I guess I would be called a soul in the balance, searching for the truth. If you have time email me, I beg of you.

    February 18, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    • RW Stoufus

      TD.

      The success of misinformation like Zeitgeist is upon the presupposition that most people do not question anymore.

      Also there is within the heart of humanity an element of trust toward others that is often abused.

      Media has utilized the principals of subversive programming to push their various agendas on the western world for almost 100 years.

      It is good to hear the matter and search its validity out for oneself.

      At any rate I would be interested in speaking with you as you seem to be a sincere seeker of truth.

      I can be reached at bobstoufus@gmail.com

      May 18, 2009 at 3:56 pm

  2. krissmith777

    TD, I’ve just sent you an E-mail.

    February 19, 2009 at 8:30 pm

  3. RW Stoufus

    another principal of misinformation is to attempt to meld it into fact.
    Zeitgeist does serve to openly reveal quite a bit of truth on some issues.
    The deception is that those facts are sued to support unresearched and unfounded arguments such as this forum aptly proves.

    May 18, 2009 at 4:00 pm

  4. Bryan

    What about the other parts, such as the three stars pointing to the location to the east? Or all of the other religious figures that share the same attributes? These seem to support the maker of Zeitgeist.

    I also wonder if your refutations arent equally as fuzzy, such as the golden calf. Your supposition is no better than his.

    I also doubt that any scholar would say for a fact that the knowledge of the precession of the equinoxes absolutely did not exist before Hipparchus.

    Also how do you account for the many stories in the Bible that mirror much older stories written by pagans, such as the story of Noah and the great flood? Given the obvious mirroring (I am going to assume that even you wouldn’t try to refute that) why would it be so out of line to assume that other parts of the Bible mirror pagan beliefs/knowledge/traditions?

    October 22, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    • krissmith777

      Bryan:

      “What about the other parts, such as the three stars pointing to the location to the east? “

      I already explained this in post 6 of my refutation of Zeitgeist. — Linked here: https://explanationblog.wordpress.com/2008/12/03/the-myth-of-jesus-a-refutation-of-the-zeitgeist-part-6/

      “Or all of the other religious figures that share the same attributes? These seem to support the maker of Zeitgeist. “

      These false claims are refuted in parts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 of my refutation of Zeitgeist. — Read my entire series before assuming that I didn’t refute them.
      Here’s the link that leads to all my posts:

      https://explanationblog.wordpress.com/the-myth-of-jesus-a-refutation-of-the-zeitgeist/

      “I also wonder if your refutations arent equally as fuzzy, such as the golden calf. Your supposition is no better than his.”

      Uhhh, not really. Because I actually have a historical basis for my assumption. — Peter Joseph, the maker of Zeitgeist, does not.

      Consider this: According to Exodus, when the Israelites made the golden calf, they had just come out of Egypt. So it is not illogical to suppose that the Calf was based on the Egyptian god Apis.

      “I also doubt that any scholar would say for a fact that the knowledge of the precession of the equinoxes absolutely did not exist before Hipparchus. “

      Then tell me why astronomers credit him with that discovery. — If you doubt it, give the evidence.

      “Also how do you account for the many stories in the Bible that mirror much older stories written by pagans, such as the story of Noah and the great flood? Given the obvious mirroring (I am going to assume that even you wouldn’t try to refute that) why would it be so out of line to assume that other parts of the Bible mirror pagan beliefs/knowledge/traditions?”

      The claim about Noah’s flood was refuted in part 8 of my refutation. — If it was copied from the Gilgamesh epic, as Zeitgeist claims, then one should expect literary dependence — That is, word similarities, and similar sentences and expressions. I READ THE GILGAMESH FLOOD STORY!!! — There ARE similar details, but THERE IS NO LITERARY DEPENDENCE, and that indicates that the scribe who wrote the Genesis flood story DID NOT copy the story from GILGAMESH. More likely, they had a common source.

      Everything you have brought up has been refuted in my other posts on Zeitgeist. Read my other posts before you assume I don’t cover those topics.

      October 23, 2009 at 3:36 am

  5. Nkanyiso

    actually according to the zeitegeist sources, Aries is the egyptian God you claim the israelites were worshiping & they have as much if not more historical evidence as you have, here is their source.
    http://thezeitgeistmovement.com/wiki/index.php/Documented_Sources_for_Zeitgeist_Part_One:_The_Greatest_Story_Ever_Told

    March 28, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    • krissmith777

      So basically to support Zeitgeist, you are linking a website that is affiliated with Zeitgeist itself. You are basically doing what many Atheists accuse some Christians of doing. Much how some Christians end up verifying the Bible with the Bible, you are ultimately verifying Zeitgeist with another Zeitgeist source.

      Most of the sources used by Zeitgeist are unreliable: Acharya S (I.e., Dorthy Murdock), and Massey… None of these sources are taken seriously in the scholaryly community.

      The link you have quotes the movie in one area saying “This is the cross of the zodiac.” I got news for you: There is no cross the the zodiac. What the movie is really talking about is the “Wheel of the Zodiac,” just to show you how basic it’s interpretations of ancient iconography are. — This detail leads me in response to your claiming that Zeitgeist has just as much or more evidence as I do that the Israelites were worshiping Aires,…give me a peer-reviewed, encyclopedic source for that. My over-all source for my claim is “The Columbia Encyclopedia,” which is prestigious. Zeitgeist is KNOWN to be attrocious at interpreting iconography.. I will not buy into Zeitgeist’s claim until an unbiased source can back it up… Also, considering that Zeitgeist is also known to mislead, misquote, and also distort the evidence, I will not accept any Zeitgeist related sources. — There are those who “Think” that Aries may have represented the Egyptian king of the gods…but the keywords here are “think” and “may have.” In other words, we don’t know at all, and the claim should therefore not be held up as if it were known.

      A final reason why the Isrealites were not worshiping Aires is in relation to the Zodiac is that the Zodiac as we know it did not exist back when Moses was around which was probably in the 13th century BC. The Zodiac was developed in the Middle East at around the 5th Century BC….FAR too late.

      March 30, 2011 at 8:14 pm

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